Exit133 is about Tacoma

Save KPLU Campaign Reaches $4 Million

(Seattle-Tacoma, WA)  The SAVE KPLU campaign has raised $4 million—another major milestone on the way to its goal of bringing in $7 million by June 30.

“The SAVE KPLU campaign is all about the community,” says Joey Cohn, KPLU General Manager and head of the Friends of 88-5 FM community group.  “It was the outcry from the community that gave us the opportunity to become an independent station, it is the community that rallied to organize numerous fundraising events all over our region, and it is the community that raised over $4 million in a little more than three months! Thank you!”

SAVE KPLU is on track to raising the money needed for 88.5 FM to become an independent, community-licensed station.  The community group Friends of 88-5 FM is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, so all donations made to the SAVE KPLU campaign at kplu.org are tax-deductible and eligible for employer matching programs.


Nearly 11,700 donations have been received with the help of two recent listener challenges, each of which was polished off in only a few days. Right now, a listener challenge of $100K is in effect, in conjunction with the Seattle Foundation’s annual online charitable giving event, GiveBIG (this year, the event is on May 3). Right now, when listeners pledge their support to SAVE KPLU their donations will be matched through the listener challenge, and SAVE KPLU will receive a greater portion of the Seattle Foundation’s stretch pool for GiveBIG. Donations to the SAVE KPLU campaign can be made at kplu.org.


Friends of 88-5 FM launched its fundraising campaign on Monday, January 11, 2016.  The campaign needs to raise $7 million, which matches the amount of the current deal between Pacific Lutheran University and the University of Washington. (One million dollars in in-kind underwriting for PLU over 10 years is also part of the deal.)


A purchase of the license by the Friends of 88.5 FM means that the station will become independent with oversight from a governing board. KPLU’s award-winning, independent news department will remain intact, allowing for greater, in-depth local news coverage in the Puget Sound region. In addition, NPR programming will continue, as will the award-winning jazz and blues, including weekly live performances, and the station’s support of jazz education through local high schools and colleges.

In addition to official SAVE KPLU events, dozens of individuals, groups and businesses in the community have rallied to the cause by organizing their own SAVE KPLU fundraising events.  An updated list is at the KPLU Calendar.  Upcoming events include:

·         April 28, 8 a.m.-10 p.m.: Save KPLU in Poulsbo, 31 participating businesses, with special themed dinners, an art walk, live entertainment and more.

·         May 9, 7 p.m. at Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley: Seattle Women’s Jazz Orchestra (SWOJO), vocalist Gail Pettis and the student group 10 O’Clock Quartet celebrate women in jazz to Save KPLU!

·         May 11, 7-11 p.m. at The Swiss Pub in Tacoma: Save KPLU Blues Fundraiser featuring Maia Santell and House Blend, the Billy Shew Band and the John Hodgkin Group.

·         May 14, 7 p.m. at the Museum of Flight: An evening with former NASA astronaut Dr. Stephen Robinson—“This Side of Impossible: Achieving the Dream of Flight.”

·         May 18, 7:30-9 p.m. at Town Hall Seattle: (KPLU) Sound Effect Live: “A Friend in Need” with author Tom Robbins, Seattle photographer Tim Durkan, singer/songwriter Kimya Dawson, Seattle writer/critic Melanie McFarland and music from Skerik's BANDALABRA (Skerik, Andy Coe, D’Vonne Lewis and Evan Flory-Barnes).

·         May 23, 7 p.m. at the Museum of Glass in Tacoma: An evening with the cast of (KPLU’s) BirdNote.



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